Author Archives: Global Urban History

Imagine Lagos: Mapping a Pre-Colonial West African City

By Ademide Adelusi-Adeluyi, University of California, Riverside Africa’s cities are now among the fastest growing in the world. But how well are their pre-colonial origins understood? Recent research on Lagos’s past reveals a thriving, indigenous yet cosmopolitan urban community, one … Continue reading

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Imagining Johannesburg: A New Book on South Africa’s Metropolises

Vivian Bickford-Smith, The Emergence of the South African Metropolis: Cities and Identities in the Twentieth Century, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2016. 340 pp., $ 99.99 / £ 64.99 / € 94.99. ISBN 978-1-107-00293-7. Reviewed by Jonathan Hyslop, Colgate University and … Continue reading

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Conveying Urban History Through Apps: Berlin’s Kudamm ’31

By Viola Benz and Birgit Wienand, Freie Universität Berlin Recent years have seen an enormous growth of possibilities for historians to engage with a wider public beyond the academy. Urban history has benefited from these changes, particularly as cheaper airfare … Continue reading

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Global Ottoman: The Cairo-Istanbul Axis

By Adam Mestyan, Duke University On a Sunday at the end of January 1863 groups of sheikhs, notables, merchants, consuls, and soldiers gathered in the Citadel of Cairo. They came to witness a crucial event: the reading aloud of the … Continue reading

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“The ‘Urban Question’ is Now at the Center of Intellectual Life”: A Conversation with Rosemary Wakeman

The Conversations section of our blog seeks to foster critical exchange about the theoretical and methodological implications of bringing together global and urban history. The blog’s editors will occasionally interview scholars to discuss questions of global urban history, spanning across … Continue reading

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Infrastructural Statecraft and the Rise of Just-in-Time Urbanism

By Boris Vormann, Freie Universität Berlin Containerization has led international trade to triple since the mid-1970s. This massive expansion and deepening of exchange networks would have been unthinkable without the construction of material transportation infrastructures in the world’s metropolitan agglomerations. … Continue reading

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Liberal Cities? What Recent Elections Mean for Global Urban History

By Michael Goebel, Freie Universität Berlin The agitated politics of 2016 have led intellectuals the world over to ponder the “end of the Anglo-American order,” the “bankruptcy of the post-war world order,” and the death of “liberalism.” That this death … Continue reading

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Pardo is the New Black: The Urban Origins of Argentina’s Myth of Black Disappearance

By Erika Edwards, University of North Carolina, Charlotte It was a typical day, nothing out of the ordinary. I, a young, small-town girl had landed in a foreign country to begin my study abroad. I knew nothing about Argentina and … Continue reading

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Neoliberalism and the Structure of Settler Colonialism in a North American City

By John Munro, St. Mary’s University It was, on the face of it, an unremarkable event. In the spring of 1989, a single-room-occupancy hotel and beer parlor was torn down in North Vancouver, Canada, and a new condominium tower was … Continue reading

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City Life and Automobility in Twentieth-Century Ghana

By Jennifer Hart, Wayne State University On the eve of his country’s independence in the mid-1950s, Ghanaian journalist Moses Danquah claimed: “We are riding confidently on the crest of the wave to greater economic prosperity, to greater social and cultural achievements, … Continue reading

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